The Female Closet (1998) Barbara Hammer
The Female Closet (1998) Barbara Hammer
The Female Closet (1998) Barbara Hammer

The Melbourne Cinémathèque & ACMI present

The Female Closet

Barbara Hammer | USA | 1998 | Unclassified (15+)

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Wed 2 Nov 2022

Hammer’s fascinating collage of archival photographs, home movies and interviews explores the lesbian histories of women artists across the 20th century: American photographer Alice Austen, German Dada collagist Hannah Höch, and contemporary painter Nicole Eisenman. A careful examination of the museum as “closet”, and a thoughtful lesson on the importance of creating and archiving feminist artwork. Followed by Maya Deren’s Sink (2011) and A Horse is Not a Metaphor (2008), two late Hammer films that reflect on and revise concepts around death and cultural history and were both recipients of the Teddy Award for best short LGBTQI+ film at the Berlinale.

Format: DCP
Language: English
Source: Electronic Arts Intermix
Runtime: 59 mins

Event duration

59 mins


Unclassified (15+)


Cinema 1, Level 2
ACMI, Fed Square

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Also screening on Wed 2 November

About the program

Queering the Archive: The Cinema of Barbara Hammer (Wed 26 Oct – Wed 2 Nov)

Over a career spanning 50 years and more than 80 moving-image works, American filmmaker and visual artist Barbara Hammer (1939–2019) initiated a new kind of cinema made from a distinctively female and lesbian perspective, challenging the assumptions of mainstream culture and opening a discourse for marginalised groups in society. Her personal and experimental films sought to inspire social change and make largely invisible bodies, images and histories seen.

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Barbara Hammer operating a camera

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Australia's longest-running film society, Melbourne Cinémathèque screens significant works of international cinema in the medium they were created, the way they would have originally screened.

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